Burton sales figures lift high-street gloom
Wednesday 07 January 1998
Burton shrugged off pre-Christmas concerns about weak trading and the impact of higher interest rates with figures showing that sales in the 18 weeks to 3 January were 7.6 per cent ahead of the previous year.
The company, which plans to de-merge its Debenhams division later this month, said sales had started more slowly than expected but improved as Christmas approached. It dismissed suggestions that some of its shops had been panicked into starting their winter sales early saying its discounts had started on Boxing Day "as planned."
There was also relief in the City that in spite of the late surge in spending, Burton's margin was in line with last year's.
Debenhams' sales, including newly opened space, were up by 6.9 per cent. The multiples business, which includes Dorothy Perkins and Principles, showed an 8.6 per cent gain. Contrary to expectations, womenswear performed more strongly than menswear. Commenting on the figures, Nick Bubb at Societe Generale Strauss Turnbull said: "It shows that there was a late pick-up in trading but whether that is the same for everyone remains to be seen."
Clinton Cards, the specialist greeting cards retailer, provided a further boost to sentiment yesterday with a like-for-like sales increase of 11.8 per cent in the five weeks to 28 December. Other retail shares edged higher on Burton's news. Ian MacDougall, analyst at Williams de Broe, said: "It has been greeted by the market with a degree of relief given the blood- curdling rumours before Christmas."
Burton's figures were in line with the 8 per cent increase reported by the John Lewis Partnership's department stores for the four weeks to 24 December. John Lewis also said it had experienced a late run in trading. Burton's shares closed 3p higher at 143p.
- Nigel Cope
- 1 Migrant crisis: Greek soldier saved 20 people singlehandedly off Rhodes beach
- 2 The confessions of men who ordered mail-order brides
- 3 UK weather: Britain braced for snow as arctic air mass moves in
- 5 'Isis' schoolgirls: Missing British teenager tweets picture of her Syrian takeaway
Migrant crisis: Greek soldier saved 20 people singlehandedly off Rhodes beach
Aaron and Melissa Klein: Oregon anti-gay bakers ordered to pay $135,000 after refusing to make cake for same-sex wedding
UK weather: Britain braced for snow as arctic air mass moves in
Power of Nepal earthquake was equivalent to 20 huge atomic bombs
Nepal earthquake video: Terrifying footage shows moment avalanche hit Everest Base Camp
General Election 2015: Chuka Umunna on the benefits of immigration, humility – and his leader Ed Miliband
The sickening truth about food banks that the Tories don't want you to know
Migrant boat disaster: Ukip candidate mocks victims in sickening Twitter post
Nigel Farage wants the BBC to stop making programmes like Doctor Who, Strictly Come Dancing, and Top Gear
Global warming: Scientists say temperatures could rise by 6C by 2100 and call for action ahead of UN meeting in Paris
General Election 2015: Britain would become a 'communist dictatorship' under Ed Miliband and Nicola Sturgeon, claims wife of Michael Gove
iJobs Money & Business
£20000 - £60000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Are you recently QCA Level 4 qu...
£20000 - £22500 per annum + OTE £30K: SThree: SThree Group have been well esta...
£25 - 30k: Guru Careers: We are seeking an Application Support Analyst / 1st L...
£45K - £55K (DOE) + Benefits: Guru Careers: We are seeking a full stack .NET D...